top of page


version (doc):


versions (pdf):


version (doc):



Folk–style wrestling fundamentals



The ultimate goal in wrestling is to gain control of your opponent and pin them, meaning that you can hold your opponent’s shoulders to the mat continuously for 2 seconds. You can also win a match by having more points than your opponent. A fall/pin or a lead of 15 points (technical fall) automatically ends the match.



There will be a maximum of three periods lasting 2 minutes each.




  • 1 point: Escapes

  • 2 points: Takedowns


  • 2-3 points: Near falls (depending


Individual scoring maneuvers:

  • Takedown: Bringing opponent to the mat and gaining control of him from a neutral or standing position. Worth 2 points.

  • Escape: Breaking away from opponent’s control to a neutral position. Worth 1 point.

  • Reversal: Breaking away from opponent and gaining control in one maneuver. Worth 2 points.

  • Near fall-2 points: Situation in which the offensive wrestler has control of his opponent in a pinning situation and holds both his shoulders momentarily stopped within 4 inches of the mat or less, or one shoulder touching the mat and the other at an angle of 45 degrees or less with the mat.

  • Near fall – 3 points: When the criteria for a two point near fall have been met uninterrupted for five seconds.


Starting positions:

  • Neutral /standing position (1st round): Wrestlers face each other with a foot on the line

  • Referee’s position (2nd and 3rd rounds):

  • Down: The wrestler starts on all fours with both hands in front of the line and both knees behind the back line

  • Up: This wrestler rest on the knee which is farthest from their down-positioned opponent. Their leg closest to the opponent is placed so that their foot is behind the feet of the down wrestler. The up-positioned wrester wraps their near arm around the waist of their opponent with their hand centered near the down-positioned wrestler’s belly button.

  • Their fair arm grasps their opponent’s near arm at the elbow



  • Single leg: Drop down to one knee and grasp your opponent’s leg with both arms, ideally locking behind the knee. Stand up and try to shake them off-balance. If they are still standing, use your inside leg to step between their legs and behind the leg they are standing on. Use your body to follow through them as your leg sweeps. Follow them down to the ground maintaining your hold and landing on top of them.

  • Double leg: Drop down to one knee and grasp both of your opponent’s legs with your arms, ideally locking behind the knee. Give a strong jerk upwards to make them lose their feet. Follow through with your body so that you land on top of them with control


Breakdowns (Top position):

  • Near arm, far leg: Using the arm holding their elbow shoot between their arms to grab their far arm at the elbow. Use your other arm to grab their far leg around their ankle. Quickly lift up and follow through with your body on top of them.

  • Near arm, near leg: Using the arm holding their elbow quickly press down at their elbow making it bend. At the same time grab their near leg and lift up. Follow through with your body so that you land on top of them with control.

  • Cross face: Same as #1 except that your arm grabs their far arm by going across their arms and face.


Escapes (Bottom position):

  • Firecracker: Quickly and forcefully shake your held arm and at the same time sprint away.

  • Sit-out: (to be added)


Reversals (Bottom position):

  • “Gambi”/hook and roll: Reach back with your right arm and hook your opponent’s elbow and pin it to your body. Dip your right shoulder and roll over your opponent in the direction that you just dipped. Stay on top to maintain control.


Pinning combinations:

  • Half-nelson with an arm bar: With your opponent face down on the mat reach under their arm and behind their head. Roll them over and keep wedging behind their head using that arm. Using your other arm grab and hold down their free arm. Your chest should be on theirs at this point. To increase your leverage get up on your toes.

  • Cradle: With an arm you grab behind your opponents neck so that their neck is in the crook of your elbow. With your other arm reach under their far leg. The goal is to bring your arms together and grasp your wrist. An additional option is to hook their remaining leg with your near leg.

bottom of page